are the er4's really as great as everyone claims them to be
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nezz18

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I currently own a pair of er6 headphones which do wonders for me when im working in noisy areas. My proble is that I really dont find the sound to be all that great. I also have a pair of grado Sr 60 headphones which i think sound better than the er6's. I also find them irritating my ears esspecially after wearing them for long periods of time. My question is, would a pair of er4 be that much better for my situation considering that they definitly sound better and maybe theyre more comfortable. And if thats not the best solution, then maybe theirs a way to make the er6 more comfortable so my ears dont fall off.
 
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Jeff Guidry

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I had the ER-6's and I tend to agree with your assessment. I found their sound to be uninvolving and they were quite irritating to my ears. This was prior to the availability of the foam eartips. If you have only tried the silicon eartips, you might do well to try some of the foam tips, which likely will increase your comfort level.

If you don't like the overall sound of the ER-6, I doubt you will like the sound of the ER-4 series. ER-6 is a less refined and accurate headphone, but still exhibits the "Etymotic" sound. If the basic sound is not to your taste, then I can only assume that a more refined version will not be any more pleasant to you.

If you are determined to give them a shot, order them from headphone.com and use the 30 day money back guarantee, so you won't lose money on the deal if you don't like them.
 
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Ken

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look at the numbers of people that talk about them. The numbers speak for themselves. Im on my second pair
 
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AngusMcToon

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I don't own Ety's (yet) but I did listen comparatively to all 3 models at the Headroom tour at length, and thought the differences between the er-6 and er-4 to be quite immense. Now, admittedly, perhaps I didn't fit them properly, perhaps this was just the effect of newness, and my ears are not as headphonically educated as many others here. YMMV, etc.

Nevertheless, subjectively, I thought the ER-4 models sounded much much better in every dimension. I was worried from comments on boards that I mind find them excessively clinical, and worse yet "weak on bass" -- but instead I found them balanced and profoundly musical and interesting (I can't say I found them comfortable, mind you, but many here say you get used to the feeling of having your ears completely stuffed with foreign objects.) The low end on the ER-4x struck me as tight and well-defined and extremely appealing subjectively. To your actual question, of course, I found the ER-4 felt "fuller" in my ears, comfort wise, and thought the ER-6 were actually more comfortable, alas.

The ER-6 I found trebly, I don't dare say tinny, but shallower and harsher in the mid-to-high in a way that seemed much more mundane at least in immediate comparison, the way mid range Sony's sound compared to higher end Sennheiser. Maybe I just had a better seal on the 4 series, but both the 4P through my own portable source and 4S through Dan's PortaCorda took me a lot further.

I went expecting to leave and order the Etys--and I do hope to own a pair eventually, as they are great phones. But then I had a very unexpected religious conversion to the HD-600s and bought a pair the next day. And it is scary how much I'm loving these phones...

Fwiw, AM
 
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dougli

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Like every other headphone, you just have to try them to see what you think of them. I found the ER-4S to be lifeless and very uncomfortable, so I got rid of them ASAP. Others on this forum would swear these phones are the closest thing to sonic heaven available. There is no "true" answer to this question.
 
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Eagle_Driver

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Quote:

Originally posted by dougli
Like every other headphone, you just have to try them to see what you think of them... There is no "true" answer to this question.


Very true on those two sentences. But I am getting into the summertime when I can't use any full-sized headphones at all -- not even for home use. You see, my ears sweat profusely every time I put them on.

I haven't heard either of the Beyers in your profile, dougli -- but I personally wouldn't like them, as to me even slightly exaggerated bass is way too much.
 
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dougli

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Well, the Ety's have no competition when it comes to what use you're looking for, since nothing else will just go right in your ear. As far as the Beyer's go, they are almost opposites. The DT770's are bass-heavy, with subdued highs. The DT831's are quite bright, without a pronounced bass. Actually, neither is just right for most of my listening, so I'm trying out an Ultrasone HFI-600 over the next few days, as well as a Pioneer SE-Monitor10R...
 
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BenG

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Well, no headphone is perfect, so it's always about compromises.

The one thing that the Etys do right is balance(if you can get around the lack of outer ear & head sensation). Transparency & speed are other strong suites. How well you hear these depends on the recording material, amp, source, and your taste.

The sonic weakness are mostly in that the sound lacks some body and macro-dynamic punch, and the soundstage and imaging could be bigger. But I think the strong points out weigh the weaknesses more than other under $500 headphones I've heard or own.
 
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planar

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1. ER4S can stand with other high end headphones without their price tags.
2. The experience with this headphone depends largely on how you insert it into the proper position.

For the money I think you can't go wrong. But I doubt whether you'll satisfy the quality difference between ER6 and ER4 - since they are sonically very close.
 
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I cannot comment on the ER6 as I have never tried them. However I can say that the ER4 produces a sound which is unlike any other headphone in my collection (although in all fairness I have to say that they are also the most expensive headphone in my collection!).

The one thing I really notice about the ER4 is the effortless power they convey and the incredible degree of detail that can come out of the recording. Imagine, if you will, that you want to just follow the bass-line or drums (or whatever). With other headphones it can sometimes be difficult to follow just one instrument playing when everything else is playing as well. With the Ety's, take your pick of what instrument you want to follow and ..... follow it - effortlessly. There's no mushyness to wade through - seperation of the instruments is very analytical and yet still musical.

It's fair to say that I spend more time listening to my Sony 888's than the Ety's but that's not because I prefer them - it's just that I really don't want to carry these expensive headphones around with me in 'walkman mode'. The Ety's are many times better than the 888's.
 
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Ken

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thats true . I do follow the bass sounds when listening to the er4s. Its wonderfull. If you love detail then etys have it in buckets.
I am yet to hear the bass detail the same with any other sound source.
 
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Vertigo-1

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Inner detail is by far the Etymotic's strongest point, and most of this comes from their isolation. The advantage of moving a much smaller and lighter driver that close to your ears also helps. The Etymotics simply have the most inner detail of any dynamic headphone I've heard.

My only complaint is they have absolutely no depth at all. While open air headphones can play things distinctly in layers with a good source and amp, the Etymotics feel as if they're playing things in one layer, going on right between your ears. Instead of hearing one instrument behind another and using that as the cue for seperating the two instruments into their own spaces, you get instruments stacked on top of each other playing, but you can still distinctly hear them seperately. Maybe this is just two very different ways or styles of getting good seperation.
 
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The Ety ER-4's are unique cans, and it does take some getting used to. Of course, when all is said and done, you either like the sound or you don't. I happen to like them, but it did take a while for me to appreciate their particular sonic characteristics.

The clarity and detail was immediately impressive to me, but it took some time before they began to sound "musical" to me, as opposed to being, oh, "analytic". It may take some time, but once it clicks for you, it's all the way there. I think that most Ety users would tell a similar story.

I initially felt that music had a "stacked" sensation. I don't feel this way at this point. At some point my brain must have learned how to properly "decode" the Ety sound. My amps do not feature crossfeed, so I do wonder if that may help you or not.

The obvious advantage Ety's have in their favor is their bass detail. There's nothing else remotely comparable. I'm not familiar with the ER-6, so I can't vouch for that model, but the 4S/4P is impressive - to these ears, anyway.
 
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lucien

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to answer your question directly...

yes, the etys are as good as people say they are. i bought the er4p based on recommendations from this site, and they have exceeded my expectations.
 
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Driftwood

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my only experience with the etymotic headphones was at the headroom tour, but I have to say that I was impressed. I only listened to the ER-4S because that would be the only that I would consider buying, and I have to say that they brought tears to my eyes. It might have been from ramming them so far down my ears, but they certainly did sound fantastic. I would purchase them next if I could only figure out when I would listen to them... the stock of headphones I already have is not large, however I still find that some of them don't get a whole lot of use as it is...

Driftwood
 
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